Welcome to Alan Howards. Thank you for joining our lively and energetic workforce. Alan Howard is one of the UK’s largest professional Hair and Beauty wholesalers, a speciality retailer and distributor of professional Hair and Beauty supplies and equipment. Alan Howards was established 22 years ago opening its first store in Stockport followed by the Oldham store and slowly expanding and taking over other local wholesalers such as EWD and Salon Services, to now having 22 branches across the North West of England. The company is family run by Howard Littler owner of the company and 2 sons Anton and Jonathan directors of the company. To shop at Alan Howards you have to provide evidence to qualify to be a trade customer such as a qualification in hair or beauty or have the appropriate evidence to show you are a business owner or retailer. We offer our services in store, online and as an over the phone order and delivery service. Alan Howards stores provide products and a service, business to business and business to public offering more than 6,000 professional products for hair, skin and nails.
Through professional lines such as Wella, L’Oreal and Schwarzkopf, along with our outside sales consultants generate up to 9,000 sales of exclusive to Alan Howards professional branded products such as Matrix, Joico, Fudge, St Tropez and more targeted for professional and salon use also for salon to retail to customers and for retailers to sell to general public. Our mission here at Alan Howards is to provide the best products on the market to help with whatever women and men are looking for and make them feel beautiful, it is also our goal to be the leading wholesaler in the UK providing the best quality and prices and the best customer service to our shoppers, so they feel confident in shopping with us and loyal to our organisation. Our vision statement is to be the ultimate hair and beauty product provider, fulfilling needs and creating desire for our customers now and in the future. Pestle analysis is an analytical tool which considers external factors and helps to think about their impact. Pestle is understanding the environment you are operating in by understanding your environment you can minimise threats this provides the context within which more detailed planning can take place to take full advantage of the opportunities.
Each factor of the pestle analysis influences Alan Howards (see below). P – Political E – Economic S – Sociological T – Technological L – Legal E – Environmental Political implications are change of government which can change vat rates which impacts our buyers and our customers which impact on the products and services we provide. An economical factor is the recession which has affected Alan Howard’s product sales with sales dropping, not as many new businesses are opening and current salons and retailers closing down, another economical factor is Alan Howard resources stock internationally, however the ever changing exchange rate has a high influence on when and what business is carried out as the pound becomes weaker we are often restricted. A sociological impact on the business is an ageing workforce with senior management staff due to retire also ageing customers with loyal customers reaching retirement age.
Technology has impacted the business with competing retailers establishing accounts on social media websites, social media is a key component for free publicity, this is an area to focus on being able to capture new young audiences. A legal impact which has impacted the company is the product selling catchment which has impacted on the company’s expansion another legal impact on the company is the change in the law on the selling and storing of hazardous products such as peroxide and acetone. An environmental impact on the company is the waste disposal policy, that all waste materials and out of date stock and hazardous stock are disposed in the correct way for example all recycled materials are recycled, another environmental impact for the company will be Zero Waste Britain in 2015 the company will be charging 5p per bag. Organisation structure is very important within a company as it helps form a hierarchy and span of control within an organisation. With Alan Howards being a large company that keeps on growing the structure of the company is a hierarchical structure as it has many levels, a hierarchical structure is sometimes called a pyramid structure because at each level downwards there are more employees.
The owner and directors are responsible for making the majority of decisions this is good for the company as owner and directors have full visibility of the company at all times. This also means that many people on the pyramid are consulted before it reaches the directors and owner, which leads to a slow reaction to changes. Some of the functions of the organisation are Sales, HR, IT, Payroll, Management, Finance and more. These functional areas all work together to maintain the company hitting their goals. In order to optimise Alan Howard’s performance the functions of the company work together HR implements company policy’s such as payroll, maternity, paternity and pensions for example payroll needs to be kept up to date from managers to make correct pay for staff. HR are also important for employing and resourcing the best staff offering the correct training to optimise sales and company performance, HR also support and manage staff performance and targets. The IT department is also an important function within our business all data presentations are stored on our systems also invoices and accounts.
As a company we use online banking so it’s important that our branch managers bank everyday so that our IT department is always up to date and in working order so the company can function properly. The final function in our company is the finance department this is who controls all the money coming in and out of the company including banking, purchasing, chasing account payments, invoicing and also giving buyers up to date budgets. All four of these functions are a vital part of the company to achieve its goals all these function work with communication to one another which is done face to face, over the telephone, with the majority being through emails This is often used as it’s an effective quick way to communicate there is also a document trail of every process which can be tracked if needed it also makes it easier to keep directors and owners up to date. Organisational culture is the attitude, beliefs and values which benefit the company.
Over time, tradition and structure Alan Howards has built up its own positive culture culture as most organisations do. Alan Howard is a mixture of a power culture and role culture, giving a sense of identity to the company and the people connected to the company, shows a sense of what we stand for and what we do. Product buying decisions are centralised around 4 key members of the company being Howard the owner, Anton or Johnathan the directors or Louise head buyer, but also using the role culture for other areas of the organisation such as customer service with various functions split each individual within the function is assigned a particular roll. A positive culture adds value to the organisation and motivates staff. The strategies adopted by our organisation can be influenced internally and externally.
HR is involved in the install planning process and with the formation of the business plan detailing objectives to achieve. HR liaises between directors, management and staff to ensure policies and procedures are applied fairly and interaction between HR department, directors, managers and staff are utilized on a daily basis. The main HR activities which take place within the organisation is training, job analysis, recruitment and selection, job advertisements, resourcing talent and managing change, setting and communicating clear performance expectations. Three ways in which HR support line manager within Alan Howards is coaching and development, health and safety, managing conflict.
Coaching and development
Managers have a great deal of people management responsibilities in addition to their daily workload. HR often offers management the guidance and skills needed to help develop their team and improve their skills providing them with accurate information and guidance. This provides mangers with increased confidence to manage staff.
Health and Safety
Alan Howards has to comply with health and safety law. HR has contributed to the creation of health and safety policies for the company. Managers are responsible for reducing the risk of workplace dangers and guarantee a safe environment for staff and customers. HR provides managers with training on health and safety laws also first aid and fire marshal training. We have maintained records of accidents in the workplace and insure that reviews take place promptly after any incident that takes place.
Managers frequently have to manage disputes at work. Identifying and addressing underlying tension before escalating is key to reduce incidents within the team. We do this by providing clear exceptions on behaviours required of all employees and encourage managers to hold appraisals to evaluate performance and job satisfaction. HR develiver coacting in conflict management and employment law HR also act as mediators when conflict develops and can provide staff counselling.